Saturday, June 23

thank you [for daily bread]

Some things that made me happy in May and June...

* working on resumes together til 1am
* big windows, 7pm sun
* licks from a golden retriever puppy
* reading a good book in a single afternoon
* pad thai (first time!)
* indie plays in tiny theaters on Monday nights
* phone call from Australia
* Dave making me a tuna melt when I want a tuna melt
* second interviews
* cherries straight off the tree
* talking about life with Melissa over bad Italian martinis
* bike rides through fields
* Dave writing a book
* raspberry and ricotta scones
* praying together
* salmon
* Friday nights alone
* Modern Family
* Sunday lunch at Luis's
* take out curry & Ocean's Eleven
* iced lattes at Kaffeine near Oxford Street
* "give us our daily bread"
* Skyping Alabama folk
* five-day-old pancake batter still makes good pancakes

Most nights since September, I've written down two or three things I'm grateful for. Too soon to tell, but this might be the best habit I ever develop.


The Capital Ring (and my sister met Obama)

London is great, but it's a city and when you live here, you do city things. Like going out for coffee and pastries, or beers, or your choice of ethnic food, or dancing, or theater. I love it all.  But most of it doesn't involve nature or exercise. And last weekend, I was craving nature and exercise.

Refusing to wallow in city woes (okay, I wallowed for a few hours), I did some research and discovered the Capital Ring, a 78-mile walking path around the edges of London, through some of the city's prettiest and oft forgotten green spaces. Despite gloomy weather forecasts, Dave and I headed to west London and walked seven miles through Wimbledon Common and Richmond Park. What a beautiful, blustery, refreshing day. We saw a historic flour mill, stood on the historic hill where Henry VIII hung out while Anne Boleyn was beheaded, watched ducks and squirrels, climbed ancient oaks, and most lovely of all, gave our legs a good stretching and our lungs some clean forest air. I'm going to walk as much of the Capital Ring as I can during the next few months. Nature's beauty aside, it's a fun way to explore new parts of London.

And oh yeah!

In case you didn't hear, my sister met President Obama on Thursday. 

Yes, they are smiling at each other in that photo, bonding over student activism and education policy, no doubt. And yes, this is the coolest thing my blog will ever report.

Analyzing my jealousy, I realized I may have a slight celebrity crush on Barack Obama.

Analyzing my crush, I realized it's because he's intelligent, witty, fun, not bad looking, and progressive... and because of this video.

I watch this video whenever I'm worried about jobs, unemployment, and the future. Yes, that's correct. I watch it every day. It makes me laugh and gives me hope and I temporarily forget about economic policies that may or may not be affecting my job prospects.  Thanks, Barack and Carly Rae (and whoever put the two of you together).


Monday, June 11

Ricotta scones

Did you hear?

The Queen recently had her sixtieth anniversary of being queen.  Hurray!  The UK loves their Queen (for the most part). We got two days off and people flocked to London and fleets of ships sailed down the River Thames and there was an epic concert and Elton John wore hot sparkly pink under a brilliant fireworks show.

Melissa was visiting over this Jubilee weekend. We went to a musical, ate at a fancy restaurant, enjoyed an indoor British barbecue (it was raining, but my, what delicious salmon), and headed to the pub after Monday night's concert.

Perhaps my favorite part of the weekend, besides spending time with kinfolk, was baking scones. I was feeling grumpy and cold and unpatriotic and our afternoon tea plans had fallen through. So I baked scones. Ricotta and raspberry scones, recipe courtesy of Smitten Kitchen, to be exact.

They are amazing. Truly delightful. You don't even need to butter them (if you're American) or top them with clotted cream and jam (if you're English). They're perfect all on their own. I've baked them twice in the past week. I will bake them again before the month's over. Do try them for yourself, in honor of the Queen, or just because they are heavenly.

Linking with love: photo from Smitten Kitchen (best food blog ever)